NPR Correspondent Wade Goodwyn keynote Moorpark College Golden Gala Aug. 26

Moorpark College President Luis Sanchez is pleased to announce that veteran NPR correspondent Wade Goodwyn will deliver the keynote address for the Moorpark College Golden Gala at the Ronald Reagan Presidential Library Air Force One Pavilion (40 Presidential Drive, Simi Valley, CA 93065), Saturday, August 26, 2017.  The Gala will begin at 5:30 p.m. with a silent auction and conclude at 10:30 p.m.  The public is invited.  Tickets are $150 per person and may be purchased online.

Wade Goodwyn photo credit: Kate Mackley Media

Goodwyn’s address will focus on the crucial role of fact-based journalism in today’s hostile and often murky media environment.  “A nation whose decision-making process is dominated by paranoia and suspicion instead of ideas and facts is a nation that can be threatened from within,” Goodwyn says. 

Hosted by the Moorpark College Foundation, the Gala celebration is designed to commemorate the college’s 50-year history of growth, excellence and student success, as well as to help raise funds for a new student scholarship at Moorpark College. The Promise Scholarship will establish a tuition-free first year at Moorpark College for eligible students, according to Moorpark College President Luis Sanchez. 

“There is a swath of our population who should be our students, but who have not yet found their way here, or to any college, because they are without the parental, social or economic platform they need,” Sanchez says. “We want to ensure that these students have the opportunity that education provides.”   Additionally, Sanchez says, education is the necessary link to creating an informed citizenry that is imperative for a functioning democracy.

“America is so polarized today, that I am concerned that we are losing our willingness and ability to engage in civil discourse. Skills in critical thinking and separating fact from opinion are critical to civil discourse and the maintenance of a republic that relies on the rule of law,” Sanchez added.

Goodwyn will address these issues and others in his engaging style of journalistic storytelling that has captivated NPR listeners since he began work with the respected non-partisan network 27 years ago. He is currently assigned to the NPR National Desk based in Texas.

“Congratulations to President Sanchez and the Gala committee on securing Wade Goodwyn as its keynote speaker for this historical event,” stated VCCCD Chancellor Greg Gillespie.  “We invite the public to join us in celebrating Moorpark College for 50 years of commitment to quality education and look forward to an informed and inspiring presentation by Mr. Goodwyn.”

“The Board of Trustees is proud of the role that Moorpark College has played in educating students and serving the community for the past 50 years,” stated Board Chair Bernardo Perez.  “We commend President Sanchez for his leadership and support the college in its goal to establish a Promise Scholarship for students,” he added.

The evening will also feature the induction of college alumni into the Moorpark College Hall of Fame, music by Moorpark College musicians, silent and live auctions, and dancing. Dress is Black Tie Optional.

For more information, please email Foundation Board Member Michael Hoffman at, or contact the Moorpark College Foundation at 805-553-4761 or email

For additional “Fun Facts” about Moorpark College, please see below.

  • Moorpark College opened on Sept. 11, 1967, with 1,168 day students and 1,362 evening students, for a total population of 2,530. Construction was ongoing with some faculty complaining about work being done in their classrooms during classes.
  • Moorpark College students took skiing lessons in the 1970s and 1980s on specialized artificial turf that covered a steep hillside on campus. Classes culminated with a field trip to an area ski resort.
  • In 1981, Moorpark College became one of only three community colleges in the state to offer a laser technology program. Students landed jobs at salaries of $16,000 to $18,000 a year.
  • Moorpark College offered its first online class in Spring 1999. The class, “Introduction to Business and Economics,” was taught by business professor Gary Izumo.
  • Butterflies were added to America’s Teaching Zoo at Moorpark College in 2007 through the efforts of biologists, staff and students, and a host of other agencies. The zoo received endangered Palos Verdes Blue butterflies as part of a captive breeding program to rebuild wild populations.
  • Amid a national debate on transgender rights, Moorpark College opened four gender-neutral restrooms on campus in 2016.
  • Moorpark College ranked fourth best community college in the nation in 2015, according to a review of almost 700 community colleges published in the Huffington Post.

Wade Goodwyn and pal: Photo Credit Kate Mackley Media


MOORPARK COLLEGE, one of three colleges in the Ventura County Community College District, was founded in 1967. It is set on 150 beautiful acres, nestled in the foothills on the southeastern flank of Ventura County, about 40 miles from UCLA, and approximately 75 miles from UC Santa Barbara. It is also a short drive from CSU Northridge, CSU Channel Islands, and California Lutheran University. Moorpark College was recognized in the Huffington Post in March of 2015 as the fourth-best community college in the nation. It has an excellent reputation for university transfer preparation, and its signature career/technical programs include nursing, radiation technology, biotechnology, and exotic animal training, which incorporates the world-renowned America’s Teaching Zoo. The college also offers a dynamic range of classes and programs in the visual and performing arts, and its pristine athletic fields and mild climate provide an excellent home for student athletes

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